Simon Jones to be The Floating Hospital's Golden Legacies Gala 2024 MC

News and Events – May 2024

News to our benefit

Breaking news — we can now announce that Simon Jones will serve as The Floating Hospital’s Golden Legacies Gala MC. As such, the actor, who is part of the ensemble cast in HBO’s The Gilded Age series, will add some lively authenticity to the evening’s own Gilded Age theme.

The series was created and written by Julian Fellowes, who also created the ever popular Downton Abbey, set in Yorkshire during the early years of the 20th century. Jones played King George V for a recent film sequel to that show, which ran from 2010 to 2015.

The Gilded Age is set in the 1880s in New York City at a time of great philanthropy, along with significant wealth disparity and social class rigidity. Jones plays Bannister, the butler who keeps the old money household and lives of the van Rhijn-Brook family in order as they cope with their upstart neighbors across 61st Street.

The gala, as previously announced, will take place on June 4 at Guastavino’s, nestled beneath the 59th Street Bridge in Manhattan. With its majestic granite arches and Catalan vaulted tile ceilings, the hidden landmark of New York City architecture is the perfect backdrop for an event that honors the hospital’s historic legacy and the tradition of philanthropy that has made its vital work possible.

Tuscan villa on the block

The Golden Legacies Gala will evoke the Gilded Age in all its grandeur and generosity. But why limit the indulgence to one night, when a weeklong “dolce vita” experience in Tuscany is up for bidding?

Included in the evening’s celebration is an auction for a seven-night stay in a luxury villa outside of Cortona, a Medieval hill town that Condé Nast Traveller dubbed the “Queen of Tuscany.” A perfect combination of old world charm and modern conveniences, it accommodates up to eight guests with housekeeping, concierge service and a chef-prepared daily breakfast enhancing the property’s comfort and beauty.

The town was the inspiration for the book, and the eventual setting for the film, Under the Tuscan Sun. The villa itself is well sited for outings such as the included full-day wine tour with lunch and transportation in an area that features famed vinicultural regions like Chianti, Montalcino, Bolgheri (home to Super Tuscan Bordeaux-style blends) and Montepulciano. Guests will also have a chance to prepare Tuscan dishes, make fresh pasta, and then feast on their creations for dinner.

Whether relaxing onsite by the pool or engaging in all of the cultural sites and activities the area has to offer, it will be an unforgettable trip for friends or family.

Can’t wait until June 4? Early bidders can contact

The Floating Hospital’s Golden Legacies Gala will be held at Guastavino’s on June 4 from 6:30 to 9:30pm.


Let’s go Mets!

The Floating Hospital provides much more than healthcare. Whether it’s baby needs and personal care items or food, the hospital aims to supply its patients with basic tools of survival, and often a little more.

Lately, the “little more” has been donations from Rescuing Leftover Cuisine, a national nonprofit based in New York City that prevents food waste and addresses food insecurity by redistributing excess food to communities experiencing hunger. According to its website, RLC has rescued more than 15 million pounds of excess food and provided more than 12.5 million meals since its founding in 2013.

Shaquille Grant, a Floating Hospital social worker who also teaches life skills to the hospital’s patients, has been managing donations from RLC since February, developing a partnership with the group that has enabled the hospital to receive donations every week, beginning in March. Last month, RLC served up an even larger regular donation from Citi Field.

Initially Grant was picking up the donations himself and bringing them back to the hospital to serve as breakfast and lunch on Fridays, along with donations from Panera Bread. With the Citi Field donations, however, he needed to enlist the transportation department, whose members have helped collect and distribute the food, not only in the hospital but to our outreach team and local shelters to help an even larger group of hungry people.

The Citi Field meals offer the same variety of cuisines served at a Mets game — from traditional American to more exotic styles such as Mediterranean and Latin. Grant said, “our patients have responded well to these meals and always look forward to Fridays to try different foods.”

everyone is welcome

Queens Pride on the march

A reminder that on June 2, The Floating Hospital will march in the Queens Pride Parade to show support for the LGBT+ community and to underscore that our services are available to everyone. The parade, which follows a route on 37th Avenue between 89th and 75th Street. The festival, which includes vendors and performances will take place at 37th Road and 75th Street. The hospital will have a booth there with information on its programs.

Those who wish to march with The Floating Hospital can contact Cynthia Davis at by May 24.

Jessica Colombo

Staff Hero

On April 24, The Floating Hospital joined in the worldwide observation of Denim Day, an annual event to raise awareness about sexual violence. It was a day for staff members to show their support of victims and to bring awareness to the myths surrounding these attacks by wearing denim and messages of support.

The hospital sponsored special prizes for staffers who had the most effective messages on their clothing. Jessica Colombo, a senior benefits counselor in the main clinic, took first place after adorning her denim jump suit with messages such as “no means no” and “rape is never funny” in support of victims and to dispel some of the myths surrounding sexual violence.

Colombo’s powerful messages helped her win a Target gift card and earbuds. Two other staffers, Lidia Arzu and Jeanell Stephens, won second prizes of a pair of earbuds each. We congratulate them and hope that everyday can be a chance to bring more awareness to the myths of why women and girls are sexually assaulted.

This post is featured in our monthly newsletter from May 2024.

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The Floating Hospital provides high-quality healthcare to anyone who needs it regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, gender, immigration or insurance status, or the ability to pay. By providing unrestricted medical care in tandem with health education and social support to vulnerable New York City families, The Floating Hospital aims to ensure those most in need have the ability to thrive, not just survive.


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